Notes from a Pandemic – March 16, 2020

KT and I decided to start writing down what we will be experiencing now and in the future. I write so we remember.

When Katie and I were in the Caymans in January, I mentioned that some of the scientists I follow on Twitter were concerned about developments in China surrounding a novel virus. We discussed what we would do in a worst-case scenario. By the time we returned from our trip, we decided to implement our plan. We started stockpiling the recommended provisions and made plans for our businesses. On one hand, we thought it was overkill but we felt we were on the right track.

Our biggest concern? We live in a nursing home. KT’s almost 90-year-old Mom lives with us. She is in great health but the statistics are not in her favor if she becomes ill. Sometimes I think KT and I are competing to make sure that neither of us can be blamed for getting sick and killing her Mom!

Our other big concern? Our daughter Willa. She lives in Indianapolis. It isn’t very far away but right now feels like it is on the other side of the country. If I had it my way she would have quit her job and moved home in January. But what I want doesn’t matter. She is 25, independent and strong. I am so proud of her and my heart aches with my love for her.

What does a typical day look like now? Training is less of a focus. I limit my total training time to two hours a day. Sometimes it is far less and other times it is a zero. I need my immune system to be strong and healthy. You can read why in my post on this blog about Training in a Pandemic. Each day I head off to work to check on our bagel operation. Well, it used to be an operation. We are down to a trickle now but doing our best to serve our community. We have implemented pick up only and delivery. All with no contact with our guests.

After work, I come home and take off my clothes in the garage. It seems excessive, but again I live in a nursing home. I leave pajamas in the garage to wear in the house. I sanitize my hands before I change and afterwards. After I enter the house, I wash my hands and then I sanitize my phone, my Airpods, and my laptop. It makes me want to limit my trips outside each day!

One of the things I have emphasized is cooking interesting dinners. JoAnn agreed to a self-quarantine over a week ago and KT has been working from home. The least I can do is make dinner interesting for them. The New York Times cooking app has been a great help. They both have been of good cheer.

Things I miss; family nights, coffee with friends, going out for dinner and drinks, swimming (that one hurts to admit), having a long term goal beyond surviving (which is a worthy goal in itself), movies and hugs.

Things I now appreciate; people. I find kindness everywhere and want to be kind to everyone around me. I don’t know who will still be there on the other side of this and if we can anticipate another side of it anytime soon. People everywhere want a mission. Our team of college students has been amazing. They want a mission, they have great ideas and they are scared. We are all scared.

The thing that disappoints me the most is the lack of leadership by our elected leaders. Small business owners should not be trying to decide what is best for the public. Yet, here I am. I seem to always err on the side of caution and I have yet to regret those choices.

Finally a note about my wife KT. Other people in our family laughed when I tried to warn them that we may have quite a problem. KT never wavered in her support and focus. She trusted me and saw no downside to being ready. Everything in our life may disappear, but we have decided that we will be okay as long as we are together. Despite it all, we still laugh each day. And just wait until she pulls into the garage with my naked ass hanging out there. She would never let me forget it. And you can bet there would be pictures.

If you are reading this, I hope you stay healthy and safe. There isn’t going to be an easy way for a very long time.

Love and good health to you all. No easy way.

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